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120-140KWh Battery Pack!

If Tesla comes up with 120KWh to 140KWh battery pack in 5 to 6 years, will u be willing to pay for a swap?? If so, up to how much, and what will be the fair way to that......calculate based on mileage on car or #of full discharges of current pack??

@AmpedRealtor - I think there is a misunderstanding. The $35k Gen3 model will have 200 miles range. But for sure for more money there will Gen3 version with longer range... (like S60 = 208 EPA and S85= 265 EPA).

And for the S model there will be a "500 miles" battery in the not so distant future without any question.

As I pointed out earlier without an improved battery technology he can not make a 200 miles Gen3 for $35k. The S60 starts at $70k (w/o tax credit) and for Gen3 he has to cut cost in half - biggest piece is the battery. Cutting the battery cost in half means reducing the number of cells by about half... there is no other way in terms of cost.

- 120 kWh charging at 10 kW = 12 hrs plus losses, so about 13-14 hrs. Most times you are not starting from zero and do not have to charge to full so it is still resonable with 14-50 outlet. HPWC would cut it half.
- the beauty of a larger battery is that you effectively increase the number of super chargers by (a) you could skip one and/or (b) charge time is shorter because you do not have charge to the slower full state.

By the time Tesla rolls out the 500 mile battery the Model S and even Model X will have a lot of upgraded tech and design. Improved interior, improved headroom. Safety features like park and proximity sensors, lane change assist, collision avoidance, smart cruise control. Electronics may be improved with better display, faster internet, including 4G (may have to pay!).

I am thinking of trading my 85P for the MX with AWD performance package but without the tires. It is more practical than the 85P. Not as sporty, but these things weight nearly 5,000 lbs loaded, so it does not matter. I keep my old Porsche (too old to sell) for that kind of fun... nothing beats the handing.

I would like to see the MS loose some weight using stronger but lighter alloys of Al and steel. Better handling and range too. Not just use brute force of more power in the batteries.

When you talk battery it's best to talk Panasonic. Read their stuff, check out their patent applications, see what rumors exist, see what they are reporting in the technical journals - then, and only then can one make a reasonable comment about what is to be. All else is impoverished speculation.

"see what rumors exist" - isn't that the ultimate speculation ?

Not a good guideline... I stick with manufacturing principles.

@Brian H,

As I described, it can't be spun up by the drive axle by belt drive. I've done it in a model car scenario and it will work in a full sized EV. I was able to run lights on my models without batteries because electric motors can produce their own power by spinning them. With everything the Tesla S is running off of the battery now, an extra smaller motor wouldn't cause enough drag to slow these cars down at all.

@AmpedRealtor....nobody is talking about hopes and dreams...we r talking about facts....which u seem to have issue with it for some weird unknown reason.........

Actually counting on it in 3 years ;)

Nonsense. Kinetic energy (motion) has a source; exploiting it draws it down. No exceptions.

TM has a proprietary battery being made by Panasonic, not something they can talk about or sell elsewhere.

Don't count on lighter alloys to help the MS/X loose lose weight; aluminum is already so light there's not much loss to be had there. Brute force batteries are far more likely.

Cutting battery cost will come partly (mostly?) from improved chemistry. Elon has been a bit cagey on the point, because it's not nailed down (proven) yet.

For Gen3 cars Battery cost will significantly come down from battery chemistry advancement. The Lithium battery cost is already coming down by 7 to 8 percent yearly. The current battery in Model S is a 2011 battery technology. In 2015/16, which is 5-6 years in the future from current Model S battery technology, the cost of the battery will be 50-60% lower compounded. Another significant saving will come from the lighter weight of Gen3 model which is expected to be about 20% lighter than Model S. That means Gen3 car can achieve the same range as Model S from a smaller pack other words a Gen3 would achieve the 200 mile range of Model S60 with 40-50KWh pack instead of 60KWh pack.

I wouldn't upgrade in 5-6 years because I'm assuming that would be an expensive upgrade, and so far, for my lifestyle, unnecessary.

In another words future significant reduction of battery cost is a "proven" deal....

Brian - sure it is not proven, it is in testing. He must have something in hand and he is definetly not waiting for some magical stuff coming out of some labs... otherwise no Gen3 in 2016/17. I am doing product development and production ramp up for 25 years... putting things into customer hands takes always a big leap of faith and it is only proven if it actually works in the hands of customers.
Cutting cost in manufacturing is only through reducing components... example in your electronic circuit you replace 5 $1 ICs with one higher integrated $2 IC. Besides saving $3 in IC cost you cut the assembly cost by a factor of five. You need the advancement in technology to replace the 5 ICs with one IC, but only the number of components and reduced assembly os what cuts the cost.
I bought Tesla stock once I heard Elon's Oxford talk a long time ago because it showed me he really understands the recipe ( many executives don't ) to make manufacturing a gold mine... also look at the battery system assembly thread on TMC there you can see exactly this recipe executed.

Tesla would rather sell you a brand new car instead of just a brand new battery to extend the life of an old car!... it is a guarantee pricing will reflect it will be more feasible to buy a new car than just a new battery.

Yes, and he also uses the guideline that 10x the volume cuts unit costs by 2x. So if 200,000 MS could have been made and sold out of the gate, it could have been half the current price!

I am very impressed. Experience engineers like you are always inspiring your engineers like me. If you don't mind could I get ur email. I am mechanical engineer with a Phd. I am passionate about product development and I would like to communicate with you over the email. If you do not like disclose your email please email me at

Thank you in advance

Brian, you don't know what you're talking about. I've proven it works. Just because you disagree doesn't mean it doesn't work. Maybe YOU should research before making your claims. What in the hell do you think a Generator is? It takes mechanical power to make electrical power.

Read before you say someone is making idiot claims. I went to school for Electromechanical Engineering a degree. DOH!

IMO. The first improvement will be greater density per cell, which is already being worked on by Panasonic. This would allow greater range with virtually the same number of cells and the same battery pack construction. This would most likely not cost any more to produce than today's pack, maybe not a huge improvement, but still every bit helps.

Oh, and to answer the post question, I would seriously consider paying for a battery upgrade in the near future, if the cost compared favorably to the amount of increase gained.

@deezo, but where is the mechanical power coming from in the first place? Electrical power. It sounds like you are going from electrical -> mechanical -> electrical. That's what regenerative braking does, but only because the only other choice is electrical -> mechanical -> heat. Adding a generator whose sole purpose is to convert mechanical energy back to electrical doesn't make sense. In your RC vehicles, why did you use a second motor, instead of just pulling power directly from the batteries? I have no doubt that it worked, but it is less efficient than pulling electrical power from the batteries directly.

Your standards for "demonstrated" evidently do not include any understanding of physics or thermodynamics.

@Brian H
Your patience amazes me.
@Deezomaxima Call your school, return your degree and demand a refund.

@Deezo: Brian is correct in the context of an electric car and the conservation of energy, physics, etc...

You were implying that there would be a benefit to add additional drag to the axel/wheels of the car to drive a generator. I don't think Brian was saying that you couldn't generate electricity this way, he was just saying that it would not be efficient use of the momentum of the car as it would use more electricity to get that momentum in the first place. That is what the regenerative braking does, use the motors to generate electricity while slowing down the car.

now, if you said, put a set of bicycle peddals in the passenger seat and have the passenger peddal a generator to add energy to the system.. that's perfectly possible... I just wouldn't want to be that passenger... :) nor the driver after an hour or so of peddeling :)

You cannot upgrade to a larger battery pack. Says the Tesla employee.

erici - irrelevant. Yes, todays TM position is they will not sell you an upgrade from a 60 kWh to a 85 kWh battery. Elon stated many times technically it is possible because they moved part of battery management into the main pack itself ( technically it is not possible on the roadster). When there is a larger battery for the MS TM may change it's position and offer an upgrade path - but that is pure speculation. If there a larger battery for the MS in the future and no upgrade path offered then I would just switch to a new car... that easy.

The original purpose of the swap stations, AFAIK, was to permit temporary use of a higher capacity battery, not just do a fast "recharge". Don't know if that's off the table.

@Kleist Elon is a rather savvy business man. So what's the better deal for Tesla: Selling their existing customer base a battery upgrade or getting their existing customer base to buy new cars, bringimg the cheaper used cars into the market and creating a larger potential future customer base by exposing more people to the Tesla driving experience?

Much as it pains me to say so, my guess is that they'd rather screw the early adopters and make us buy a new car. Compare what Apple did with their early adopters. Yes, the price tag is very different, but the economics are similar.

And reading between the lines of what many posters state here in their posts (about their airplanes, their Bentleys, etc) and given how many people here appear to be driving fully loaded P85+... disposable income to buy a new car in a few years doesn't appear to be a big issue.

And then there are the rest of us who bought their last car more than ten years ago and still can't believe they spent this much money on a bare basics TMS60... who will likely be stuck with a 60kWh battery for the next decade :-)

I am driving the S60 and plan to keep my MS for 10+ years and do not see any reason my MS cannot last that long. By 2020, I expect a lot of development on new battery technology like lithium air (or other sold state type battery) will become fruition. This new kind of battery will dramatically increase the cell density and I intend to upgrade the battery so the 500+ range is possible. This is assuming TM will adopt the technology along with modifying the firmware to accommodate the new tech. Yes, TM will have to test, change the firmware and all to support the new tech. but I have a fair confidence to see they will do that because by 2020, we are not just talking about MS, but Gen III and even supplying to other car manufacturers. There is going to be a huge market for upgrade. Needless to say, the competition will be there using this tech, so I expect TM will endorse it.

@jamestily@comc...The decline of lithium battery cost is significant. In the last two years alone, since the 2011 battery technology currently in Model S, the cost of Lituim cells have gone down by about 20%. The only point people can really make is this type of improvement in battery performance and cost will not continue in the future. It's true at some point the rate of improvment will slow down significantly. But the consensus among experts right now is the improvement will keep going on for a while at similar rate.

@Byong: Loved your comments. I especially like the "Bicycle Pedals" in the Passenger seat. This might be the new version of "Splitting the cost of Fuel" for the trip. By the way, here is an interesting article concerning the development of new Battery Technology if anyone is interested. It sounds like it may still be a few years out before we would see this technology though.

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